Ocober 15th, 2012
The Ontario Forage Council (OFC) developed and launched the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum in October 2009. The purpose of the Hay Marketing Forum is to provide a forum to exchange information and promote the Ontario and Canadian hay industry, also provide a major focus on International market opportunities.
The OFC has been actively working with other regions across Canada on the development of the Canadian Forage & Grassland Association (CFGA) which received its incorporation status in early 2010. One of its objectives was to pursue and encourage export marketing opportunities for the Canadian hay industry, of which Ontario has major potential. A major part of the “Long Term International Strategy” (LTIS) was to access funds to assist with costs for Fact Finding Studies to potential key hay markets. These applications have been successful, and three Fact Finding Missions have now been completed. These Missions have been conducted to Middle East, Southern Florida and in recent weeks, a Mission to China has just been completed.
A complete report is being prepared on the China mission and will be available to all members in the near future. Participation at the world Dairy Expo in Madison Wisconsin also created a great awareness of the Canadian hay situation and highlighted the excellent quality hay being produced across the country.
As a result of the Fact Finding Missions, a Working Group from the Hay Marketing Forum was appointed and has been successful in obtaining funding to assist with the cost of doing a feasibility study for setting up some Double Compaction Facilities in Ontario. That study is now completed and a report was presented to the members at a meeting in Guelph in March. A Working Group from within the Hay Marketing Forum is being organized and will formulate a report and presented to the membership.
Canada is widely recognized around the world as an excellent trading partner and forages are a key part of that mix, in which Ontario certainly has much to offer. Agriculture Canada has also expressed keen interest and is beginning to realize the tremendous potential for the forage industry. OMAFRA Food Export division has also been actively supporting the forage sector. The OFC is committed to providing a complete update to the members as information becomes available.
Ontario hay producers and marketers are invited to become a member of the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum and take advantage of the two-year introductory membership opportunity to keep abreast of the most up to date forage market information. To date we have had extremely positive feedback, and we fully recognize this is an excellent opportunity to promote your business, and be kept in the loop for the latest in export opportunities.
Progress has been slower than originally anticipated, but considerable success has been achieved, and the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum members have excellent exposure on the OFC web Site and through brochures that are displayed at numerous Trade Shows. Membership in the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum also makes you eligible to join the Canadian Forage & Grassland Association.
To access an application form or obtain more information, go to the OFC website – www.ontarioforagecouncil.com or please feel free to contact Ray Robertson at the OFC office 1-877-892-8663 or 519-986-1484
Function and Disclosure
The Ontario Forage Council (OFC) is striving to develop the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum and assist in generating a high level of integrity within the forage industry.
The Ontario Hay Marketing Forum will serve as an information source and will act as in information link between the provincial, national and International hay marketing industry. Ontario Forage Council will not enter into contractual agreements between buyers and sellers and will not assume any financial liabilities.
For the overall benefit of the Hay Marketing Industry in Ontario, across Canada and Internationally, OFC reserves the right to refuse membership in the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum. Further be it known - if a member is found to have committed unethical acts, or failed to comply with generally accepted business principles, OFC reserves the right to remove the subject name from public exposure on the Ontario Hay Marketing Forum and any membership fee paid will be non-refundable.